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Captive IS women sentenced to five years in prison

The Correctional Court of Antwerp sentenced Bouchra Abouallal, Tatiana Wielandt and Kaoutar B. to five years in prison and a 6,000 euro fine for their participation in the activities of a terrorist group. The three Antwerp women were absent from their trial. Tatiana Wielandt and Bouchra Abouallal are known to be living with their children in a camp in the north of Syria and reportedly would like to come back to Belgium.

According to the court, the three women played an active role within Islamic State (IS): “Tatiana Wielandt and Bouchra Abouallal, as wives of Syria fighters and in the education of the children to become Syria fighters. Kaoutar B. was actively engaged in recruiting women for marriage with IS fighters. They also explicitly endorse the doctrine and the abomination of IS, effectively creating a danger to our society, “it said in the verdict. The court ordered their immediate arrest.

Walter Damen, a lawyer who has been acting for Wielandt and Abouallal, did not oppose the federal magistrate’s claim for their immediate arrest. “I hope the authorities will do everything to get them back. They are willing to accept their responsibility.“

In 2013, convert Tatiana Wielandt (25) from Merksem and her sister-in-law Bouchra Abouallal (25) left with their husbands and children to the front in Syria. Since then they have caused a lot of trouble for the police and the judiciary.

When their husbands Noureddine Abouallal and Saïd El Mourabit – both members of Shariah4Belgium – died in Syria, the Antwerp friends were pregnant and alone. Abouallal was also seriously injured in a bombing.

They returned to Belgium from Syria under pressure from their family. The women themselves crossed the border to Turkey, where  Belgian security services were going to take them back in 2014. Both Wielandt and Abouallal enjoyed great prestige in circles of extremists Belgium, as widows of a Syrian warriors. They also made little effort to deradicalise. They gave their newborn children names that referred to the jihad. The children of Wielandt are called Mujahid (warrior) and Shahid (martyr).

In the summer of 2015, the Wielandt and Abouallal left for Syria with their two toddlers. In a Facebook post Bouchra Abouallal drilled the Belgian deradicalisation policy from Syria. “Your system has failed, oh Belgian state. You kept an eye on us 24/7, and you still have not managed to stop us. (…) We left for Syria because we believe this is a duty for every Muslim. You have given us that last nudge, “she wrote.

In Syria, the two widows married IS fighters, who have disappeared without a trace. They themselves are locked up in the refugee camp Al-Hol, in the north of Syria. In an interview with VRT journalist Rudi Vranckx they said that they would like to return. “We regret our mistake and hope that we can rectify it”, says Abouallal.

“Even if they give us 20 years, we accept our punishment”, Abouallal said. “As long as my children are safe and can go to school, I do not care”, Wielandt added.

The Brussels Times